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Bracketology Update

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2014 NCAA Tournament – Projected Field thru action on 03/13/14

As we continue with Championship Week here is the way we see things shaping up.  We will use this last breakdown moving forward: Teams bolded and underlined are LOCKS; “ * “ indicates a certain one bid league; new non-major conference champions will come with quick description about their resume; bubble is discussed only at bottom of entry.

*America East: Stony Brook

American Athletic: Louisville, Cincinnati, UConn, Memphis

Atlantic Ten: UMass, VCU, St. Louis, George Washington

ACC: Duke, Syracuse, Virginia, North Carolina, Pittsburgh

*Atlantic Sun: Mercer

Big 12:Kansas, Iowa State, Oklahoma, Texas, Oklahoma State, Baylor, Kansas State

Big East: Villanova, Creighton, Xavier

*Big Sky: Weber State

*Big South: Coastal Carolina

Big Ten: Wisconsin, Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State, Iowa

*Big West: UC-Irvine

*Colonial: Delaware

*Conference USA: Southern Mississippi


*Horizon: MILWAUKEE - The Panthers put together quite the run in the Horizon League Tournament including knocking off the 1, 3 & 4 seeds to seal their bid.  UWM ranked 2nd to last in adjusted SBPI in the Horizon league, good for #181 in the country – one of the lower ranks that will be in the field.  Their most noteworthy action in OOC play was a 26 pt loss at Wisconsin and an 11 pt home win over Northern Iowa – not exactly impressive.  With an RPI hovering close to #140 the Panthers will be on the 15 line most likely.

*Ivy: Harvard

*MAAC: Manhattan

*MAC: Toledo

*MEAC: North Carolina Central

*Missouri Valley: Wichita State

Mountain West: San Diego State, New Mexico

*Northeast: MOUNT ST. MARYS - The Mountaineers shocked the Robert Morris Colonials on Tuesday evening to seal the NEC automatic bid.  In the SBPI those two teams were nearly identical, with just a 0.1 difference in power rating; MTSTM’s adjusted ranking is #205, which will be amongst the worst in the field.  Before their win over RPI #121 Robert Morris to earn the title their only prior Top 150 win on the season was against #142 American University by 4 points in late November.  Expect the Mount to earn a 16 seed, potentially taking part in the opening round action in Dayton.

*Ohio Valley: Eastern Kentucky

Pac 12: Arizona, UCLA, Oregon, Colorado, Stanford

*Patriot: AMERICAN - American shocked BU on their home-court to earn the Patriot League’s automatic bid.  The only Top 150 wins the Eagles have all season are twice over BU & three wins over Holy Cross; they played a road game in OOC play against one NCAA tourney team (Ohio State) and lost by 11.  AU ranked 5th in the Patriot in SBPI, #233 in the country in adjusted SBPI – one of the worst ratings of likely tourney teams.  The Eagles will be either a 15 or likely 16 seed.

SEC: Florida, Kentucky

*Southern: Wofford

*Southland: Stephen F. Austin

*SWAC: Texas Southern

*Summit: NORTH DAKOTA STATE: the Bison took care of business and earned the Summit’s automatic bid, and with their high RPI of #36 could be in line for a 12 or 13 seed.  In the SBPI NDST rates #41 on a non-adjusted basis, and #84 adjusted for SOS, which is pretty strong for a non-major conference team – they are slotted just above NCST, Seton Hall, UNLV and Missouri to name a few.  NDST did beat CAA champ Delaware but lost to CUSA favorite Southern Mississippi at home by 1, and at Ohio State by 17.

*Sun Belt: Georgia State

West Coast: Gonzaga, BYU

*WAC: New Mexico State
 
FIELD: 68

AUTOMATIC BIDS & LOCKS: 61

Currently I project 61 of the 68 bids are earned (Xavier, Colorado & Stanford added). 

We currently have 10 teams that are in the mix for 7 open bids (St. Johns, Georgetown, Arkansas, California removed).

Keep in mind however that DOES NOT include the upsets we will see during Conference Tournament week where teams that are LOCKS from smaller conferences lose a game in their conference tournament and hence use an at-large bid on themselves.

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I believe there are 10 bubble teams and I've made comments on them below:  

St. Joseph’s (PA) & Dayton: I give SJU the edge over Dayton right now based on their sweep of the regular season series.  The winner of today’s A10 QF between the two is locked into the field; the loser still has a chance.

Nebraska: a win over Ohio State today seals their bid.

Tennessee: a win over South Carolina gets them very close to locking in their status, but because it’s the Gamecocks that is the kind of game that can really only hurt their resume sadly.

SMU: season is done, they are just hanging onto one of last few spots.  With all the media hype they have received this season they will likely earn a bid, but a lot of their metrics just do not stack up.

Arizona State: the Sun Devils got blown out last night against Stanford not helping their cause a ton.  As of this moment they are in the field, but feel they are likely to fall back out with some teams just below them still playing, and bid stealing opportunities still alive & likely.

Florida State: a win over Virginia today and they are in the field; a loss & they likely come up just short.

Minnesota: the Gophers need a win today over Wisconsin to seal their spot; a loss & it’s likely another late season fold will cost Minny their spot.

Missouri: needs to beat Florida today to remain in the hunt.

Providence: the last team on the bubble in the Big East playing Seton Hall tonight will not help a ton, but it’s a must win.  With a win there, and good showing in BET Final (even with a loss) they could sneak into the Field with some help.
 
Multiple bid conferences (total of 46 bids in 10 conferences; 22 single bid conferences = 68 bids):

B12 (7)
P12 (6): California removed
B10 (6): Minnesota removed
ACC (6): Florida State added
A10 (6): St. Joseph’s & Dayton added
AAC (5)
SEC (3): Arkansas removed
BE (3)
WCC (2)
MWC (2)

  
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